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The Cay by Theodore Taylor

The Cay (1969)

by Theodore Taylor

Series: The Cay (1)

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The Cay is the story of Phillip, a little boy that live in the island of Curasao a dutch island, near of Venezuela during World War II, that the germans want. As he and his mother are trying to escape the war and return to their home in Virginia. Phillip survives in the boat accident only for trapped on an island with a negro named Timothy and a cat. The accident leaves Phillip blind. Not only does he have to learn to live with his blindness, but he must learn to survive on the barren island in the Caribbean Sea. Phillip is also faced with other challenges includes a big hurricane. This book gives the reader a better understand of how to survive in a bad condition.

jumpy adj : subject to sudden, involuntary starts, especially from nervousness, fear, excitement, etc. pg12

pompano noun: a deep-bodied food fish, Trachinotus carolinus, inhabiting waters off the South Atlantic and Gulf states. pg 40

groan verb: to utter a deep, mournful sound expressive of pain or grief. pg36

outrageous adj: of the nature of or involving gross injury or wrong: an outrageous slander. pg58
  Flatronezt2 | Mar 5, 2014 |
Pretty good. Very different than I anticipated. One I avoided as a child because it won awards and I "should" read it. ( )
  njcur | Feb 13, 2014 |
One of a few MG "Robinson Crusoe" stories that I've read of late. Like "Call it Courage" this thin novel is a bit dated and I'm not sure if the relationship between 'young bahss' and the elder Caribbean is meant to be a commentary on race-relations ("The Cay" was published in 1969) or was an uncounscious product of racism (like Sperry's book). The storyline was fairly thin as well. Like "Island of the Blue Dolphins" this story is slow-paced and rhythmic, but there isn't much of a climax and the ending is even a bit of a bore. Still, for the contemplative middle schooler who can read dialect ("Dis b'dat outrageous cay, eh, Timothy?") and likes adventure stories, it's not bad. I'd recommend "Hatchet" by Gary Paulsen, however, as a first choice. ( )
  ResAliens | Feb 6, 2014 |
When I was teaching, I read this with my 5th grade students. It got them thinking about the assumptions we make about one another, how we treat others, and the true meaning of friendship. ( )
  CDVerhoff | Aug 30, 2013 |
The Cay is the story of a young boy and older black man who wind up shipwrecked on a deserted island after a horrible storm at sea. The main dilemma is that the boy loses his eyesight in the chaos, and has to learn to put his faith in Timothy, the black man who has been marooned with him. The story is of their long struggle to survive on the island with only their surroundings to use. In the end, the boy learns many valuable lessons about life, and Timothy (the black man) gives his life to save the boy.
This book is a realistic work of fiction that could be used for many different purposes. It would be great as a character study book, where students dissect each character and discuss their traits. It would also be a good book to use if the class was studying the earth and habitats or adaptation, as this book allows for much reflection about the power of the Earth and how we must adapt to meet our needs. ( )
  beckytillett | Apr 4, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 54 (next | show all)
Mary Purucker (KLIATT Review, July 2005 (Vol. 39, No. 4))
Twelve-year-old Philip's ordeal as a castaway after the ship he was on was torpedoed in 1942 has never lost its appeal as a strong survival tale with two strong characters. When German submarines increase their activity off the coast of Venezuela, Philip's mother insists that the two of them leave the island of Curacao where his father works for an oil refinery, but she refuses to fly and they take passage on a ship. Not many days go by before they are blown out of the water and Philip finds himself on a raft with a gigantic elderly black man and the ship's cat. His mother's prejudices at first make him uncomfortable with Timothy, but he learns to love and respect him. Suffering from a severe blow to his head, in a few days Philip becomes totally blind and totally dependent on Timothy. When they finally land on a small island, a cay, Timothy teaches him the skills to survive even if he is left alone. Michael Boatman narrates in a straightforward way, easily giving Phillip a slight Southern accent and Timothy's voice a West Indian flavor. The pacing and timing are perfect as the pair battle the elements, get to know each other, and prepare for potential rescue. Category: Fiction Audiobooks. KLIATT Codes: J*--Exceptional book, recommended for junior high school students. 2005 (orig. 1969), Listening Library, 3 cds. 3 hrs.; Vinyl; plot, author, reader notes., $30.00. Ages 12 to 15.

added by kthomp25 | editKLIATT Review, Mary Purucker
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To Dr. King's dream, which can only come true if the very young know and understand it.
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Like silent, hungry sharks that swim in the darkness of the sea, the German submarines arrived in the middle of the night.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
When the freighter on which they are traveling is torpedoed by a German submarine during World War II, an adolescent white boy, blinded by a blow on the head, and an old black man are stranded on a tiny Caribbean island where the boy acquires a new kind of vision, courage, and love from his old companion.

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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 044022912X, Mass Market Paperback)

This award-winning novel remains a powerful classic of prejudice, love, and survival. In 1942, 11-year-old Phillip Enright lives with his parents on the Dutch island of Curaçao, but when the war moves too close for comfort, his mother decides to travel with him back to the safety of Virginia. When their boat is torpedoed, however, Phillip is blinded and finds himself adrift on a life raft with an old black man and a cat. They eventually land on a deserted island. Phillip is suspicious of "the large Negro," but soon grows to trust--and ultimately love--the patient and generous Timothy. Dedicated to "Dr. King's Dream," The Cay has a clear message that friendship is colorblind; it is also a terrific adventure story of a young, newly blinded man learning to survive on an uninhabited island. (Ages 12 and older) --Richard Farr

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:26:52 -0400)

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When the freighter on which they are traveling is torpedoed by a German submarine during World War II, an adolescent white boy, blinded by a blow on the head, and an old black man are stranded on a tiny Caribbean island where the boy acquires a new kind of vision, courage, and love from his old companion.… (more)

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